Animal feeding experiences are popular events in a number of zoological institutions, generating a valuable income stream and can be important educationally. However, the impact of feeding experiences on the animals involved is very rarely evaluated. Within Wild Planet Trust zoos there are a number of animal experiences that have been evaluated from both an animal welfare and visitor education standpoint. Considering the personality of the individual animals, frequency of events and possible predictability of experiences help to provide evidence-based recommendations for visitor experiences at both Wild Planet Trust and BIAZA institutions.

Project team

Holly Farmer, Paignton Zoo
Kathy Baker, Newquay Zoo
Joanna Newbolt, Paignton Zoo


Jones, H., McGregor, P. K., Farmer, H.L. and Baker, K.R. 2016. The influence of visitor interaction on the behaviour of captive crowned lemurs (Eulemur coronatus) and implications for welfare. Zoo Biology 35: 222-227.

Wirobski, G., Newbolt, J., and Baker, K. 2016. The effect of visitor feeding experiences on behaviour of a group of Rothschild’s giraffes. Poster presentation at the 17th Annual BIAZA Research Conference, Yorkshire Wildlife Park, UK.

Baker, K.R, Buss, D, Jones, H.V, Mayers, V.G and Farmer, H.L. 2015. Behavioural effects of visitor feed experiences on lemurs are short lived. Poster presentation at the PSGB Spring Meeting, University of Roehampton, UK.

Jackson, R., Footitt, E., Baker, K. and Farmer, H.L. 2014. The effect of visitor feeding experiences on behaviour: do animals anticipate interactions and how do they respond? Presentation at the 16th Annual BIAZA Research Symposium, Blair Drummond Safari Park, UK.

Mayers, V.G. and Baker, K. 2014. Lemur feeding experiences: welfare and the effect of
personality. Presentation at the 16th Annual BIAZA Research Symposium, Blair Drummond Safari Park, UK.

Buss, D. and Baker, K. 2013. The effects of visitor feeding experiences in a captive zoo-housed environment: Are they enriching or not? Presentation at the 15th Annual BIAZA Research Symposium, Wildwood, UK.


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